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BASEBALL NOTES

Sources Say Dodgers Courting Reed

November 17, 2000|ROSS NEWHAN

Is Rick Reed, the New York Met right-hander on the free-agent market, a focus of the Dodgers' winter pitching pursuit?

The Dodgers denied Thursday that they have made an offer for Reed, but three industry sources insisted that they had. Reed's agent, Phil Tannenbaum, said he "wouldn't get into the details" but that he had received a multiyear offer and he expected to continue "harmonious discussions" with the Dodgers.

Reed, 35, was 11-5 with a 4.11 earned-run average in 30 starts with the Mets and would apparently be employed as a No. 4 starter by the Dodgers, behind Kevin Brown, Chan Ho Park and Darren Dreifort, whose re-signing as a free agent remains the club's No. 1 priority. The Mets, according to a source, have offered Reed three years at $19.5 million. Tannenbaum said he has a four-year offer from a club he would not identify, but he is believed to have told the Mets that they will have right of first refusal.

Dodger General Manager Kevin Malone said he would not discuss specific pitchers but "improving the rotation remains our focus. We're doing our due diligence, but I wouldn't say we're close to anything."

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